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Which Amenities Should You Provide for Your Brewer Tenants?

Mother and Daughter Watching Cable TV in Their Brewer Rental HomeSome single-family rental property owners recognize the benefits they can gain from offering certain amenities to their tenants. A considerable number of Brewer property owners have started considering if they should include amenities such as internet and cable television service as well as utilities like water, sewer, and even electricity in the cost of the rent. And doing so, in some cases, is not only good to make your rental home more competitive but it also does a lot to attract tenants as well. On the other hand, some renters don’t really want the amenities offered. This means you losing out on potential applicants. This shows how important it is to know who your target demographic is and what they want. When you have a grasp of the local market, you’ll be able to better choose which amenities you should offer for your rental homes.

In some markets, when you offer amenities, you’re giving your rental home a competitive edge; in others, it’s expected. It may also allow you to charge a higher rent. If your area has a high census of young professionals or retirees who rent, there may be strong demand for “all-inclusive rentals,” or properties that offer not just a house, but additional services as well. They may be searching for a rental home that includes cable and internet services as well as utilities. Especially if you plan to have more than one tenant for a property, providing such amenities can eliminate conflict and spare them from many of the more common hassles of renting a home. For instances such as this, you can raise the rental rate to cover the costs of each amenity, and these types of tenants would gladly pay a higher rate for them.

However, for some demographics, providing amenities like cable, internet, and utilities doesn’t make sense. Some markets just don’t have the demand for these. Even with the popularity of internet service and cable television increasing, not all renters may want or need it. For these tenants, having them pay more for a service they don’t want would just drive them away.

Many renters prefer making the decisions themselves. They want to have a say on whether they pay for these types of amenities, as well as the freedom to choose their own service providers. This may hold true with utilities as well. Some tenants may prefer to set up and manage their own services with the provider of their choice. This usually happens in areas with more than one option for utility service. Doing this also gives them the power to choose how much they pay for those utilities, rather than paying a fixed sum included in their monthly rent.

Both options have their respective advantages and disadvantages for property owners themselves. Setting up cable, internet, and utilities in your name give you more control over the services available or installed on your property. The property owner would have to contend with abandoned satellite dishes or other paraphernalia if they leave the choice of provider up to the tenant. But if you get to decide, then you can make sure that utility or other amenities are not creating an eyesore or damaging their valuable property. You also get to enjoy a larger tax deduction on your income tax return if you choose to pay all the utilities. This would then help reduce your tax liability.

However, irresponsible tenants may run up a utility bill, figuring they won’t be paying for the extra charges anyway. Also, signing up for internet and cable service typically involves some up-front costs, which a landlord may have trouble recouping through higher rent. As the account holder, it’s on you to make sure the bill is paid each month, and it doesn’t matter if your property is leased or not, you’ll still have to do this. These cases can significantly impact an owner’s cash flows, at least in the short term.

Do consider all the pros and cons of offering cable, internet, and utility services. The final decision is, ultimately, in your hands. Remember that not all rental homes are in the same situation, that’s why there cannot be one answer for every property. But with the right information, you can make the choice that is best for you.

Feel free to consult the experts in the industry. Contact a professional Brewer property manager today. At Real Property Management Acadia, we make it our business to help you succeed in the real estate investment game without all the hassle. Feel free to contact us online or by phone at 207-561-7482.

We are pledged to the letter and spirit of U.S. policy for the achievement of equal housing opportunity throughout the Nation. See Equal Housing Opportunity Statement for more information.